£50k boost to fix up popular St Andrews beauty spot

Lade Braes, St Andrews.
Lade Braes, St Andrews.

The neglected Lade Braes area is to be repaired and improved, thanks to a £50,000 funding boost from the St Andrews Common Good Fund.

The pathway through the beauty spot has fallen into disrepair, with pathways crumbling and in some cases requiring warning signs for public safety.

At the recent meeting of the North East Fife Area Committee, councillors approved an award of £50,000 from the Common Good Fund, towards improving the Lade Braes.

The Council’s Parks and Countryside Service will provide ‘in kind’ works towards the project, and will also investigate further funding to allow continuing improvements to the Lade Braes.

The improvements will see paths widened and reinforced, and damaged areas repaired.

St Andrews councillor, Brian Thomson, welcomed the approval of funding from the Common Good Fund.

He said: “This is excellent news for St Andrews. The Lade Braes is a special place, which is much loved by local residents and visitors alike.

“Several areas have fallen into disrepair over the last few years, but with continuing cuts in Council funding,

the money simply hasn’t been available to carry out the necessary improvement works, and different ways to fund such projects have to be found.

“Given the importance of the Lade Braes to the town, allied with the relatively healthy state of the Common Good Fund, I was pleased to support the funding application.

Cllr Brian Thomson at Lade Braes, St Andrews. (Picture: Chris Wallard)

Cllr Brian Thomson at Lade Braes, St Andrews. (Picture: Chris Wallard)

“There’s often debate as to what should or should not be funded by the Common Good Fund, but I’m firmly of the view that it should primarily be spent on things that will benefit the town in the long term, and improvements to the Lade Braes is a perfect example of this.

“The basis of works is a survey that was carried out in the spring of 2016, which identified key areas that needed improvement and, along with my fellow St Andrews councillors, we were really keen that the works could be carried out.

“To fully upgrade all areas of the Lade Braes would likely cost a significant sum, but this is an important first step that will hopefully be followed – if funding can be identified – by further improvements.”

The works will include new paths, repairs to old paths, added fencing and drainage, along with new surfacing on some walkways.

Patrick Marks, secretary of St Andrews Community Council, said: “We’re very supportive of any work to improve Lade Braes.

“It will be great to see improvements, and better quality walkways.

“At the moment there are parts which are not fit for use by certain people, with tree roots breaking through the path and creating a hazard and an obstacle.

“It seems like maintenance of the area has been neglected, but I understand the costs involved can normally make things difficult.

“The work is absolutely necessary, and it’s a good use of the Common Good Fund.”